Overstayed my visa in Argentina by 1.5 years

Hello everyone,

I am in a very tight spot, I came to Buenos Aires from Canada on May 25 2010, and was on a three month tourist visa. Of course I had to fall in love and forget about all the paper work, or to at the very least apply for anything, but no---I just let it go and began teaching English for cash, well 1.5 years goes by fast and I want to know what the process will be like if I go to my Embassy today and turn myself in. The other problem is that I have been robbed 3 times of everything, and now in two weeks will not afford to live or rent even a hostel. I want to go back to Canada but also do not want to be put in jail here "in Argentina-no thanks"

Well the other thing is my girlfriend "once I get back to Canada, will move to Canada with me, she has no record or marks against her, but while I am talking to the officals should I leave her name out of the story??

I do not know if a Embassy will even help me get back home? will they? I have no money, nada!!

what should I tell them????

Gracias for your time and will watch for your answer.





george. i am going through almost exactly the same situation as you. i overstayed my 3 month visa, ran out of money, and my return ticket was screwed up because of my parents. but i have been a very, very lucky guy because a very kind person has loaned me money to buy a ticket home.
BTW the embassy won't do a thing for you unless you have money to pay for your own ticket home or you know someone who can pay for you. they will advise you to go to migraciones if you don't have any money or can't get any money. i am assuming the next process will be deportation. if you get deported then you might be banned from re-entering the country for a long time. so if you have or can get money then .. buy a new ticket home. deportation would spell disaster for you especially if you are in love or you want to return to argentina. go straight to the airport and pay the $300 peso fine for overstaying your visa and exit the country. i am british.. so obviously the british embassy advised me not to go to migraciones at all because if i don't have money or a ticket at the time then they might detain me and start the deportation process there and then.
but go to the canadian embassy and they will give you all the advise you need. they won't detain you or give you trouble they will just tell confirm the information that i have posted here.

Phil's picture

Thanks for chiming in on this

Thanks for chiming in on this one. I only deal with U.S. immigration law but this seems like good advice. You certainly want to be fully informed of any potential long term consequences of overstaying the visa. As far as the money problems for the ticket...that's a bummer. I was robbed a few times abroad and I know that sucks.


no problem, phil. i hope george finally got him self sorted.
i have an update on my situation which might be useful to george and any other people who get themselves in an unfortunate situation overseas. in my last message i told you that i was informed by the british embassy not to go in person to migraciones to to seek advice or pay the $300 fine but to pay on my way out of the country at the airport. my girlfriend who is a worrier went into the "ministerio del interior direccion nacional de migraciones" in rosario, santa fe to ask for advice about exiting the country just to make sure i didn't have problems at the airport. it put my mind at ease because there are far too many rumours and vague bits and pieces of advice flying around the internet about what to do when overstaying your visa and paying a fine. anyway migraciones told my girlfriend that we could pay here in rosario rather than in migraciones in BA or at the airport.
in the end i actually went in person accompanied by my girlfriend to migraciones in rosario and paid the 300 peso fine. this contradicts my earlier advice but we were reassured by a good friend of my girlfriend who works in migraciones that i would not be detained as long as i paid the $300 fine. you can still pay at the airport by the way but i wanted to tell you of my experience at migraciones. just make sure when you do go to migraciones that you have a valid ticket out of the country and the $300 for the fine.
- WARNING – make sure that if you don't speak spanish try to take someone with you who does! It will get you a long way. You will find especially in cities outside of buenos aires that not many people speak fluent english.
the whole process of paying the $300 took just over an hour. to start with we waited until our ticket waiting number was called out then we talked to someone sitting behind a desk.. they asked for my passport, put some data in their computers, went away for just over 5 minutes and then came back and asked us to take a seat again. we then got given a document and were told to go and pay the 300 peso fine at a bank about 5 blocks away from migraciones and then come back. we got to the bank who stamped the document after we paid the money of course. that took no more than two minutes. we returned to migraciones as instructed and handed in the form. the guy behind the desk ripped the top section of the form off and handed it back to me and we took a seat once more. after about 10 minutes the guy called us back and we were told to go and a get a photo copy of the main part of my passport (photo, passport number, general details etc.) and the page which they stamped passport on entering the country. we did that at a general store over the road came back and handed the photo copy over. the guy went away and came back with a "habilitacion de salida" document and handed it to me. this is the document you need to hand in on the way out of the country to prove that you have permission to leave. that is essentially what you are paying the $300 for. he then told us i had ten days to exit the country (it also states this on the habilitacion de salida form)and we left. i am not sure what happens if you don't leave the country within ten days but i assuming you would have to pay the 300 peso fine again.
anyway. that's it.
i would just like to this say to anyone out there who is planning a long trip abroad.. be prepared with plenty of money and sense! good luck!

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